Should you build in the city, or the suburbs? It’s a common question to ask when looking for a new home. We’ll run you through the top considerations to make when making the choice.
Deciding where you live is as important as the home you move into.
When it comes to a first home, a lot of people ask themselves the question, 'the city or the suburbs?' Here are some important factors that every first-home buyer should consider.
The answer will often depend on how much money you have to spend, but it’s not only about that. You need to determine what you’re looking for in an area and a home. To help you decide and to get you one step closer to realising your dream, we’ve put together a list of the good, the bad and the ugly of both.
Big city living
Cities are drawcards for the best of everything. Sport, live music, theatre, the best new restaurants and bars. Plus, if you love an area steeped in history, with atmospheric streets, beautiful old buildings, art galleries and museums, then the city is your place.
Leaving is hard to do
If you’ve been living in a city for some time and have built up a big support network, it can be hard to move to the suburbs. It all comes down to how important it is to you. It’s a compromise that might lead to a larger home, or your first home at that.
The downside of city living
City life comes with certain restrictions around size and price. You may find that in certain instances you are required to pay a premium for bigger homes in the city. So, if size does matter to you, you might find looking at property further from the city.
Competition is tough
More home buyers generally means more competition, so if you’re set on living in the city, you’ll need to get organised and be prepared to compete with others for your dream home (here are some great tips for first home buyers!). Being open to exploring new areas will give you a more excellent choice and could mean your home owning dream comes true sooner.
The upside of the suburbs
The outer suburbs may be cheaper than more populated areas like the CBD. And it is generally accepted that
there’s a better standard of living for first home buyers looking to start a family or people with young kids.
At Stockland, we pride ourselves on masterminding new suburban villages. We focus on liveability and have a history of creating spaces around the country where communities thrive.” - Hannah Madill, Aura Development Manager
So much thought goes into making Stockland communities beautiful places to live with access to all the amenities families need. Like community centres, shopping malls, parks, schools, childcare centres and family events such as outdoor movie nights, kids’ barbecues and group fitness sessions.
Better quality of life
According to research by Stockland, people who live in residential suburbs in new communities have a “higher level of wellbeing than the national average.” People are less stressed in the suburbs and are experiencing a gentler pace of life.
And due to the lower turnover of tenants compared to cities[i], there is the potential to develop long-lasting relationships in the suburbs.
“The suburbs can offer more open space and a change of place as well as a tailored lifestyle.” - Hannah
The days of the suburbs being boring are long gone. You’d be surprised at the cafes, restaurants, shows and live sport on offer, especially as the need for local amenities grows with the trend of people moving out of the cities in search of a better lifestyle. The same can be said for transport links which are continually improving.
Family matters and outdoor living
For people considering expanding their family, suburban living may be a good choice. It could mean more rooms, more storage, safer neighbourhoods and bigger backyards. Take a look around newer suburbs that offer amenities such as brand-new schools and childcare options. They also give residents ample opportunity to build close bonds with other families at a similar life stage. There is also the potential to find larger lots in the suburbs.
“There’s more space for the kids, a pet or a veggie patch. You’ll be amazed at how much more you may be able to get for your money, particularly in new residential villages.” – Hannah
Is there a downside?
The most talked about drawback is the commute. But public transport is always improving as are our cities’ roads.
And some workplaces are becoming more flexible about where and when people do their work. If you find a dream home in a suburb that’s a bit further out, then you might see that the positive aspects might outweigh the negatives aspects.
The last word
A lot of the time where you live will depend on what stage of life you’re at. Our best advice is to keep an open mind.
Exploring new areas will give you a greater choice and could mean your home owning dream could come true quicker than you might expect.
Click here to go back to Stage 1: Working out what you want